Pros:Contortionists, and Fire handlers
Cons:Clowns, and the Venue
The Bottom Line: Save your money for a different Cirque du Soleil show. Alegria is slow and boring.
There are two parts to this review--the show, and the venue.
Alegria is a traveling show, so the set, lighting, and sound has limitations. The performers did very well for the most part, however humans are not perfect, so there were a few boo-boos. The show's script could use a bit more engaging acts. There was only a couple moments which made me forget about looking at the clock. The Chinese-style contortionists, and the fire-baton boys were captivating. Other than that, my mind wondered to what was for dinner. The inter-act clown bits were too long, and the main acts lacked pizazz. Again, it was not so much due to the performers, but the writing of the show.
I've seen several Cirque shows, including both permanent and traveling shows, and this one makes me yawn. The live musicians were wonderful...when they were playing. There were several awkward moments of silence, when there very well should have been some appropriate music to back the visual entertainment. So, tweak it some more to engage the audience's short attention span, otherwise, I can sleep at home for free.
The new arena, Cedar Park Center in Cedar Park TX, lacked lustre as well. The experience was disappointing, uncomfortable, annoying, and frustrating. The only thing that resembled a good aspect was that my early arrival to the venue alloted me a parking spot within only a few steps from the building's entrance. This new arena had zero aesthetic qualities. You would think that a modern public building would have some artistic input in the architecture, but no.
Moments after entering, I was greeted with a concession-stand price list which makes movies theatre prices look appealing. Next, we found our seats, only to discover that our knee caps would double as head rests for the folks in front of us. Really?! Did the owners really sacrifice customer comfort in order to fit more uncomfortable patrons? Everyone who I saw had their patellas touching the seat in front of them, or were forced to sit askew or invade their neighbours' personal space. I think that this decision will create many one-time-only visitors.
As the lights went dark for the shows commencement, a blinding light appeared from an open door in the top level of the audience. "Oh", I thought, "They let one late-comer in.". I divert my gaze back to the stage. I wonder what I missed while my attention was diverted to the flood of light from the open door, and the subsequent readjustment of my pupils to the new light level. There...it happened again! Another door opened, and light pollution spilled across the arena, during a spiel by one of the singers about "no flash photography due to safety". I almost expected her to point up to the open door on the upper level and say, "...and THAT is annoying too.". These doors kept opening through the entire show, washing the audience and stage alike with the very distracting glow on the sun. This interfered greatly with the lighting effects of the show, not to mention the attention of the audience. The lower-level doors had curtains to mute this effect, but the upper-level had no apparati.
Spring for the curtains Cedar Park Center, or don't allow entry/reentry during a performance. It seems that they were only thinking of sport events during design. The frustrating portion of the visit the the Center was at intermission when I went to use the toilet. I find a huge queue down the corridor outside the men's room which rivaled the woman's. These small restrooms cannot adequately serve the quantity of people in this building. Did the designers adhere to the minimum requirement of the law, and disregard the convenience of the building's customers? Sometimes, you need to splurge a bit to keep the customer happy. Common sense, and forethought seems to have been in short supply during the preparation to build the Cedar Park Center. I will not be returning here, even if it were free of charge.
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